It is hard to envision the Gundagai Tigers being any more of a competition threat when you consider the current crop of stars that regularly grace Anzac Park in the famous Black and Yellow colours.
Still, Gundagai coach Adam Perry believes a young crop of stars could be the difference for the Tigers in 2020, suggesting he has approximately 25 first grade quality players to call upon.
“I reckon there would be around 25 players genuinely pushing for the first grade squad and there is only a couple that haven’t played first grade yet,” Perry said.
“There is a around half a dozen youngsters that are really making a claim, including Jake Elphick and Jack Elphick, Corey Wilson, Zac Fairall, Tallis Cotterill, and Riley Britt.”
Perry believes having these youngsters will create more competition for positions, and said it was a nice problem to have when considering what his starting 17 might look like for round one.
“You would always rather have those headaches, rather then have the opposite and be struggling for players,” Perry said.
The Gundagai skipper said that there would be an air of expectation surrounding the Tigers and their claim for another Group 9 premiership this season.
“I think there is always those expectations with Gundagai, they have been pretty successful over a few years now,” Perry said.
“I am sure the boys have been training by themselves, and all of the group will be playing hard once we can, and I don’t expect this year to be any different; we should be thereabouts.”
In regards to a return to play amid the Covid-19 crisis, Perry was adamant that any type of Group 9 season should go ahead, explaining that it was imperative for communities such as Gundagai.
“My preference would be to play, I understand all of the issues with crowds and gates, but I also see the positivity that being around mates, both payers and committee members, can bring for the mental well being and mental health side of things,” Perry said.
“I think at the moment, with people having issues as far as work and with isolation taking a toll, I think anything we can do will be a positive.”
Gundagai will hope to have their ambush of Tigers on the training paddock shortly, with NSWRL expected to make some major announcements on Monday.
“We are just waiting to get directive from NSWRL but we are all hoping it is good news and we get back into it,” Perry said.